Tuesday Numbers

There were 286 new listings today and 157 sales, for a sell/list of  54.90%.  Of the sales 24, or 15.29%, went over list.  8 of those were on the Westside. 4 were in East Van, 2 in Richmond, 2 in New West,  3  in North Van, 1 in Maple Ridge,  2 in Coquitlam, 1 in Burnaby and 1 in the Fraser Valley. 

Average list price of the sales was $550,404; average sales price was $539,735, a difference of $10,670, meaning the average sale went for 1.53% under list price. 20 properties went for list price. One property went for 16%($388,000) under list while the highest over list was 13% ($157,000) over.

There were 10 million dollar plus properties sold, with  three over $2 million. Average days on market to sale was 31.

There were 67 price changes, of which 9, or 13.43%, were increases. The average original list price of price changes was $615.975; the average new price was $602,378, a difference of $13,598, meaning the average price change was -2.28%.  Average days on market to price change was 49.  Is it just me, or are these asking prices climbing?

Inventory in my target area rose  to 11,275, while over 90s also to 1,851, a percentage increase to 16.42%.

0.51% of all active listings in my target area had their prices reduced today. 

For those asking recently about how long it takes to get a listing processed these days, take a look at a recent message to members:

“Due to the volume of listings being received the MLS Department will be entering listings daily as late as 7 pm until further notice. Please resist the urge to call looking for your listing until 2 full business days have passed. Higher call volumes result in less listings being processed.  Please note that in order to serve our members equally, all listings received by the Board will be entered in the order tht they are received regardless of how they are delivered to the Board.  Thank you for your patience during this very busy time”.

 I think its safe to assume a few more high listing days. 



Filed under Daily Numbers

43 responses to “Tuesday Numbers

  1. Domus

    Thanks Rob. The rise of listings seems unambiguous.
    It is also true that listings always rise in the Spring, but this year there seems to be a big difference: stock is not sold as fast as before.
    If it stays like this, we can imagine that a a few flippers will start to feel the pinch this same Spring. First of many…..

  2. With this pace, the listings will reach 12,000 soon. The higher asking price and lower sell/listing ratio indicates a gap between the sellers’ confidence and the buyers’ wallet.

    The 20% down payment change may instill some buying powers to the market.

  3. liman

    Hi Rob !
    What is the highest number of listings in your area Rob since you started keeping track of listings .As I can remember it was around last New Year around 12000 and something.Inventory is up ,sales are down ,but prices are not droping yet .Why ???

  4. Strataman

    Hi Rob Excellent blog! I see prices higher then ever especially condo’s which I am most familiar with. Also I see more open houses for condo’s resales, but few or no line-ups for these open houses as opposed to what I hear for SFH. What is your take on the sales in your area, detached versus attached condo? Where is most of the action or is it spread evenly with type of listing?

  5. Skeptic

    15% overlists
    Days on market 31
    13% of price changes are increases

    Yep, we’re still in a very strong market. Given the above data, I would’t be holding my breath for any price drops in the near future.

  6. Jim

    Thanks skeptic. I was about to pass out. (from holding my breath). Next was going to be heel banging.
    I don’t know alot about other areas, but I know the Westside. It is standard operating procedure to list at about 5% below asking and comps. So when a house sells at or below asking, its comparable to a healthy discount in a normal market. Overlists reflect tactics not the market.
    Domus: don’t forget listings info is immediate(couple days), sell info. refers to month old or older listings. So sell list ratios need to be calcualted over a month or longer. But, Domus, the trend is your friend.

  7. e

    as skeptic mentioned, it is still a very strong market. however, as jim mentioned, one must also watch the trend.
    * 35% more listings than this time last year.
    * sell list ~58% vs 70% this time last year
    * % changes which are price increases around 12% vs 27% this time last year
    * sales over lists around 15% vs 18% last year

    remember the market is driven by supply and demand, and things take time to adjust. remember in the US, inventory was growing for quite some time before buyers realized this and had more time for selection, and before sellers realized this and had to be more competitive. there is still a lot of hype in the air to delay the realization of building inventory (supply).

  8. Anonymous

    Hi Jim, yes, good point about the listing prices, i.e. sharp pricing. The only number that really matters is the sale price. Like you, I only follow a small part of the market, Nth Van SFH’s, so apart from what I read here, I’m not really in touch with the other areas. It seems like there is a lot of condo building downtown and elsewhere, however from what I’ve heard, due to shortage of tradespeople, nothing is completed on time.

  9. blueskies

    the pain is mainly in Spain:

  10. Domus

    Spain, Republic of Ireland, USA…..3 very bubbly markets experiencing serious (and likely longlasting distress). Others will join the bandwagon.
    Vancouver is, as far as most metrics go, well above any historically safe levels of appreciation. It is a matter of time before it will crash to the ground, as in the past.
    Of course, the nature of the bubble is such that investors/owners are reluctant to recognize the unavoidable end (as documented by Keynes, Kindleberger, Galbraith, Shiller) which is the recipe for the impending distaster.

  11. Jim

    Anon 9:09: Welcome, we don’t usualy respond to anonymous posters, so grab a handle.
    Yes price is key. However to form an opinion on the “market direction” inventory is key.

  12. Wet Coaster

    Ia m very troubled by the trend. We have been looking for over a year now and see prices climbing….weekly!
    If this continues we will be priced out of the market….for now.

  13. robchipman


    Mark me down as not buying your conclusion completely (especially the SOP part), but your trend comments, as e and Anonymous point out, are very accurate.

    Fair to say that in some areas over-lists may be an indication of more sophisticated Realtors? Or is it indication of Realtors trying to give away the store? Are the sellers onside, and informed participants, or are they outside the loop? And what is the implication for buyers and buyer’s agents? If I list your property, with your knowing participation, “under market”, in order to get an over list that is perhaps a little better than market, is the buyer agent wrong to tell the buyer to pay full list, and perhaps a little more?

  14. Paulb

    hey Domus,

    Shiller (Yale) is one of the people that called the bubble. Irrational Exuberance. Do you mean another Shiller?

    Where is oracleofvancity? I want to see the bull spin on the numbers.

  15. robchipman


    Thanks for the link. Three thoughts:

    One, H&G network, cheesy British real estate character, goes to Spain to help someone market the home. She took a beating. That show’s probably a few months old already, if not more.

    Two, are we talking about all Spanish RE, or just the holiday variety? I know, for example, that Costa Rica has two distinct markets – the foreign oriented one and the locally focussed one, and I suspect that they both behave differently.

    Three: “However, in recent months cracks have started to appear and mortgage demand has slowed as homeownership levels topped 85%”. Does that really imply that 85% of housing is owner-occupied? And that this can be a problem because mortgage demand drops? I understand that some feel that low levels of owner-occupiers is indicative of a market that almost must collapse.

  16. robchipman

    Interesting! I just went to re-read the article that I cut the quote from and found that its been changed. Same subject, more info.

  17. blueskies

    “That is not good news for UK investors in Spain,” said Diana Choyleva of Lombard Street.

    “We have had over-investment on a gigantic scale and it has already started a slowdown in house price growth,” she explained.

    from the article, the problem is starting to be recognized although it will only sink in slowly
    3Q07 will be an interesting time… globally

  18. Spud

    Skeptic said:
    “Average days on market to sale was 31.”

    There are a 2000-3000 sales a month. There are 11000 listings. Do the math. If that rate applied to the entire existing inventory there should be 11000 sales by this time next month. Sales are clearly biased towards recent listings.

  19. Jim

    Fair rebuttal as always. Listing below market to attract eyeballs and a feeding frenzy is common for SFH on the Westside.-but perhaps not ubiquitous .
    Wet Coaster:
    Welcome. You may be thanakful that you found nothing to buy in the last year. Nobody has ever really ben priced out “forever”. The longest I have heard someone being priced out for is 73 years.

  20. awum

    I get the feeling that the market is splitting. Some areas and some housing types are still hot and sprinting ahead at top speed. Other areas and housing types are starting to wheeze, leaning over and holding their knees.

    SFHs on the North Shore? Sprinters for sure.

    Condos in East Van? Ready to drop from a heart attack, maybe?

    Don’t forget, you would expect average and median prices to continue to rise for a bit even after a market starts to reverse. Happened over and over again in US markets. The reason is simple — sales slow down and properties begin to linger, but the sales that still do go ahead are naturally going to involve the most highly motivated sellers, and perhaps the most attractive properties. If you want to watch the reversal happen quicker, I’d suggest you watch total sales volume (in $).

  21. robchipman


    We talked about that North Van house a few weeks ago. I think its a good example of what you’re pointing to. In the end it sold for more than it had been listed for the previous summer. Lots of activity = overlist, but it also indicated a rising market. Still, low list price generated 9 offers, and a $90k over ask. Excellent tactic in that case.

    73 years is the longest time for being priced out? Look at how much his landlord subsidized him! 🙂

  22. awum

    By the way, we seem to be trending past 3 months of inventory again.

    I would not buy a condo in this market. Condo prices have outperformed SFH prices for a couple of years for no good reason except that the supply was temporarily inadequate to meet demand (I blame speculation for some of that). That’s price compression, and I expect to see it start to reverse, perhaps even as soon as we have balanced market conditions again.

  23. Wet Coaster

    Thanks for the tips. I’ll be dead in 73 years!
    Seriously though I am seeing things priced 100K over 3-4 months ago and selling!
    i.e. one of Robin Vrba’s properties (Sherbrooke street & 34th) priced at 578 sold 701 in 3 days!
    Paul Eviston (24th & Main) priced at 499 sold 650 with 12 offers in 2 days!
    If this trend continues will that mean that livability on the East side will start at 1 Mil?
    Victoria is looking better & better…..

  24. Jim

    Maybe you can remember when it was cheaper to buy a condo than to rent one. I know I can. Mid to late 90’s.

  25. robchipman

    Wet Coaster:

    That Paul Eviston listing was listed way undervalue, and most people knew it. We eyballed it right off, had a look and didn’t go back (we knew competition would be fierce). I don’t think Paul underpriced it by mistake. Funnily enough some appraisers I know were talking about it and pretty much called at leat $100,000 over list prior to the showing.


    If it can be cheaper to buy than to rent in certain markets, what should the investor do? Obviously buy when we’re there, but mid ’90s was a very plateaued market. We weren’t recovering from any peak/crash scenario in condos. (In fact, if you’re a believer that graph lines repeat then the apartment line is problematic because we don’t have the same cyclical peak/trough line as houses, for example).

    Equally obvious is that its hard to find good metrics now. What would you wait for? A fall in prices, or good metrics? (Ignoring the whole which comes first/chicken and egg bit). The reason I ask is that you can find some good metrics – its just hard. Do good metrics on their own make it a buy?

  26. Jim

    Rob correctly observed that asking prices are going up. This may be why sales are slowing.
    WRT the 90’s condo market. It was not an acceptable lifestyle for many would be home buyers yet.
    I am studiously trying to avoid crystal ball gazing in my posts-but I am starting to go over to the”dark side”.

  27. Domus


    asking prices are going out because people (just like in the US) feel entitled to the kind of appreciation observed for the past few years.

    Pricing goes like this: take comps in your neighborhood in the past 5 months and add at least 5%. Simple rule. In good times they can pull it off. Not for much longer though.

    Patience, patience……

  28. Skeptic

    “Pricing goes like this: take comps in your neighborhood in the past 5 months and add at least 5%. Simple rule. In good times they can pull it off. Not for much longer though.”

    Rob, what’s your take on this, is Doomus on the right track ? Any tips on how you price properties that you sell ?

  29. Wetcoaster


    Your right about the Eveston place on 24th. It was a deliberate considering the assessed value was higher.
    But how do you explain the frenzy of buyers paying 125 or so over asking on the Vrba place on Sherbrooke?
    It seems to becoming a pattern. Too littler inventory too many buyers with cash.
    We can’t compete in this market!

  30. Snick

    I have noticed a fair number of “NEW!” (actually “old”)
    re-lists lately. Sneaky.

  31. robchipman

    Pricing property is tough. There are many approaches to it. Domus says that you take recent comps and add 5%. Jim says you take recent comps and subtract 5%. That’s 2 ways, assuming you can find good comps. Condos should be simple, right? A bunch of units in the same building, except floorplans differ, the size differs, the floor in the building changes, views and direction change, and renos and updates vary, and that’s probably the simplest thing to price. Houses multiply the variance like crazy. The result is that there is a bit of science and a bit of art.

    I’ll be honest that I get a gut feel for the price, and then try to prove myself wrong or right. Sometimes I’m way off, and sometimes I’m right on. Basically I look at a place and say “It’s got to be closing in on a mil”, and then I look at the best comps possible.

    There are three standard ways of pricing: income, replacement and comparative. Income is something we use when buying income properties, obviously.

    A second way is replacement. Look at land value, add square footage times depreciated building cost, and you’ve got the answer. The problem can arriving at a fair building cost. One rule is 2% per year, meaning a 50 year old house has no value. Sometimes this is true, but many times its not, so the science has to be modified by the art.

    Comparative simply takes three actives, three recent sales (less than three months), and 3 expired or over 90 listings. Price slightly less than the actives, and slightly more than the sales (assuming a textbook market).

    Usually I do a combo of the three. The comparitive is the most user friendly for sellers, but if I have data oriented people I give them everything.

    The other challenge is that once you price something you find out how the market reacts. What if it doesn’t sell within 40 days? What if it sells once the sign hits the lawn, but before it hits the MLS? Think of the recent South Slope example. The price got no shortage of thumbs down, and yet it sold full price before it got a ton of exposure.

    Looking at it another way, if we have a certain amount of committed demand (they’re going to buy something, come hell or high water) do the simple numbers. If we have 3 1/2 MOI (probably a bit higher now) and a 500%-60% sell/list, clearly the majority of properties aren’t selling (even though we consider this a strong market). Why aren’t they selling? Maybe some are simply not what buyers are looking for (too small, too big, too far away), but clearly, price plays a role.

  32. robchipman


    I didn’t see Sherbrooke. Maybe I missed it, or maybe it didn’t have the kind of value we look for. I can’t comment on it.

    Desperate buyers? The ones we have aren’t desperate, but it is hard to find the right product at times.

    Two thoughts: an old investment saw is to fall in love with the deal, not the property. Maybe we have a few people falling in love with proeprties these days.

    Another rule (at least for some) is to not fear going against the trend. Jim mentioned that apartments could be bought for less than rent in the 90s. The trend was to rent, not buy. Go figure.


    I had a listing last year that expired. I’ve since re-listed it and we’re trying again. I don’t consider that sneaky. What are you seeing and can you share any addresses?

  33. Skeptic

    Rob: “Maybe some are simply not what buyers are looking for (too small, too big, too far away), but clearly, price plays a role.”

    I tend to think all of these factors end up playing out simply as price, do you agree ?

    Also, do you pay any attention to assessed value ?

  34. Skeptic

    Thanks for the detail in your response Rob, appreciated 🙂

  35. awum

    Jim: Ugh! The idea that condo living has become “an acceptable lifestyle for many” reminds me of a Far Side cartoon where two dogs are anxiously waiting with wagging tails while their owner opens a can. One turns to the other and says with wide eyes and a huge smile “Oh BOY, Dog food AGAIN!”

    People buy what they can here, regardless of what they consider “acceptable.” When it takes two above-average salaries to buy a condo, it ceases to be a matter of choice, don’t you think?

  36. jim


    I believe you are correct. Another choice is to rent, and, dollar for dollar that makes sense for a lot of people. If I was a renter in the U.S. for the last 2 years, I would be feeling as arrogantly intelligent as a Vancouver Westside homeowner (or Mercedes driving West Van realtor) about now. I have alot of real estate (lots), but I rent my principle residence. My arrogance should kick in this Fall.

  37. aaronbest

    “Paul Eviston (24th & Main) priced at 499 sold 650 with 12 offers in 2 days!”

    Wet Coaster: I jumped on this listing right away. I was thinking of making an offer. I, like everybody else was told the owner wasn’t ready to start showing the property. A week later at the open house I counted at least 75 people walking around the house and property. I expected a heated multiple offer session, but to my surprise it sold for $50,000 more than I could justify paying. There is at least another $50,000 needed for renovations.

  38. aaronbest

    “Pricing goes like this: take comps in your neighborhood in the past 5 months and add at least 5%. Simple rule. In good times they can pull it off. Not for much longer though.”

    “Rob, what’s your take on this, is Doomus on the right track ? Any tips on how you price properties that you sell?”

    Skeptic: No that isn’t how to properly price a home. Anybody taking this approach isn’t doing their job.

  39. e

    You mentioned:
    “If I list your property, with your knowing participation, “under market”, in order to get an over list that is perhaps a little better than market, is the buyer agent wrong to tell the buyer to pay full list, and perhaps a little more?”

    Its interesting you mention that, because that is exactly what happened in the US in October-ish or so 2005 (I was there on business for a few months and read the NYT and Seattle papers monthly). Stories about listing low to get offers in and get a bidding war. A few months after that, prices started to fall. Preceeding this was the usual rising inventory + rising prices combination.

  40. accountant88

    April 25th, 2007 at 12:26 pm

    That Paul Eviston listing was listed way undervalue, and most people knew it.

    Is the seller not taking a significant risk by agreeing to list at “way undervalue”?

    Let’s say all the multiple offers came in a marginally above asking price and one of the offers was an “all cash no subject offer at above asking price by say $5,000.” Is it true that the seller could reject all the offers, but would be on the hook to pay the realtor commission fee?

  41. ängstlich

    This is an interesting blog–glad I found it.

    Rob wrote: Is it just me, or are these asking prices climbing?

    It seems like selling prices are climbing, too, no? Combine that with March’s prices being 12 percent higher than a year ago and it seems hard to say this market isn’t strong.

    Not that I want it to be–trust me, I’m sitting on a huge amount of equity in a house I’m about to sell from whence I came and it will amount to nothing here….

  42. robchipman


    I’ve never experienced it, but you’re referring to a Realtor providing a ready, willing and able buyer, which is a condition for payment.

    If I were the listing Realtor, and had advised listing under value, and then found that I’d actually made a boo boo, I’d probably shut up.

    The selling Realtor, however, has a very good case. He has to prove that the buyer would meet the sellers terms, of course, and I don’t know how easy that would be, but his exposure is much less than the listing Realtor’s – after all, the selling Realtor could well have written a very justifiable price.

    So technically speaking you are right. It could be argued that the listing Realtor who engages in this exposes his seller to danger, but it is a calculated risk. In most cases its a local Realtor who knows his business. The exposure is minimized by an over list offer (not uncommonly over list by a substantial amount).

    Out of area Realtors – beware! I’ve seen cases where an out of area Realtor gets a listing from a seller who wants a set price (and an unrealistic price). They list at what they think is under market and hold off showings. On showing day there is lots of traffic. The problem, of course, is that the house is well priced. Two sharp local Realtors with qualified buyers make list price no subject offers. Both get rejected and the listing gets cancelled. Speaking hypothetically I’d wager no commission was paid, but that the listing Realtor got a big fine.


    Assessed value is related to current values, but in reverse. You can argue that currently assessments in one area are .75 of market value, understanding that next month they might be .70 or .80 of market value. You must also understand that this is a less effective tool, as assessments can be way off to begin with. In a pinch it can be a guide.

  43. Wet Coaster

    Here is the Sherbrooke place:

    It sold for 701!!
    I thought the Eveston place on 24th was an anomaly but sales like this are a scary trend. People with too much money paying way over the value. The assessed value on this place was under 500.

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